Tag Archives: #Caregiving

From Caregiver to RN: How to Make the Step Up


If you’re a caregiver for a family member or friend and think that you’re pretty good at it, why not become a professional registered nurse (RN)? No matter who you are, what gender you are, or how old you are, there are always opportunities out there for you to make this kind of step up in your life and career.

You should know, however, that caring for one or two people that you know is a completely different ballgame to nursing hundreds of strangers back to health day in, day out. You should also know that, no matter how experienced you may be when it comes to caregiving, you won’t just be able to step into the profession of nursing. Copious amounts of training and education will need to be undertaken before you can call yourself a full-fledged health provider.

To see what you need to do to become a registered nurse, check out the information listed below.

Complete an accredited program

In order to become a registered nurse, first and foremost, you need to complete an accredited nursing program. Accredited in this sense means either a nursing diploma, a bachelor’s degree, or an associate degree. By taking an undergraduate Associate’s Degree in Nursing, you will learn the ins and outs of good practice with regards to bedside manner and treatment, and you will be educated all about proper healthcare regulation, law, ethics, and policy.

If, after taking your accredited program for two years, you are still hungry to learn more about the world of nursing before you actually step into it in a professional sense, you should enroll in an advanced degree course. By taking a Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science, for instance, you will receive a far more thorough education in relation to the demands of being a nurse — for the most part, you will be taught all about critical thinking and how it can help to improve patient intervention. Fear not, as the taking of such a course can be balanced alongside a full-time career in nursing. There are plenty of opportunities for you to take an RNBSN online course, meaning you can study and earn your degree in your own time and at your own pace.

Throughout your journey in education, from your first undergraduate degree right through to your final postgraduate one, you will be faced with these kinds of topics:

  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Biochemistry
  • Statistics
  • Chemistry
  • Microbiology
  • Nutrition
  • Psychology

As you can see, then, it might be advantageous for you to brush up on your science knowledge!

Pass the NCLEX-RN exam

While studying for your undergraduate degree, your educators should prepare you for the ensuing NCLEX-RN examination. This exam is an essential milestone in your quest to become a registered nurse — you can’t be deemed a professional nurse until you pass it.

Upon graduation from your undergraduate degree, you should register with the National Council of State Boards of Nursing right away, as doing so will speed up the process of you being able to sit the exam. When your time to take the test comes, you will receive an Authorisation of Test notification, either via phone or email.

With over 119 questions to complete in only six hours, the NCLEX-RN exam isn’t going to be a walk in the. You will, then, have to give up the summer following your graduation and devote it to even more revision! If you happen to fail on your first attempt, fear not, as you will have the opportunity to retake the exam once the 45-day waiting period is finished.

Obtain state licensure

With your NCLEX-RN pass confirmation in hand, you then need to set about the task of obtaining state licensure — this is a requirement for you to be able to practice as a nurse in your place of residence. In this instance, you should know that each state has its own rules and regulations when it comes to licensing. Some places will require you to sit yet another test in order to prove your worth as a nurse, while other places will just ask you to sign a number of documents. In order to see what your state board mandates with regards to licensure, you need to get in touch with them right away.

The step up from caregiver to registered nurse is not an easy one. If you truly believe that caring for others is your God-given talent, though, you shouldn’t let the trials and tribulations listed above stand in your way. If you want to become a nurse, you go out there and you do it.

Leave a comment

Filed under Caregiving

15 Healthcare Podcasts For Caregivers


Caregivers must manage the stress and difficulties of professional or family caregiving each day. But helpful advice, informative sources and personal stories can lift a little of the burden in this role. Podcasts offer a simple and convenient way to connect to other caregiver’s experiences.

Here are 15 healthcare podcasts caregivers should start listening to.

1. Agewyz

Highlighting caregivers behind the scenes, Jana Panarites discusses the healthcare industry and brings in experts to raise awareness about the aging process. With a focus on informing the world through media, she addresses creative efforts to display different diseases and conditions related to aging.

2. Club Sandwiched

Andrea Weber emphasizes with others caring for two generations. Offering advice on raising kids and managing elderly parents, she takes listeners through the chaos of both responsibilities.

3. Life Is a Sacred Journey

For both seniors and caregivers, this show encourages everyone to find the positives in aging. Micheal Pope and her guests talk about everything from technology to pride in relation to older family members and friends.

4. The Healthcare Policy Podcast

As policy issues come to light, David Introcaso weighs in on the pros and cons. Caregivers can stay current with updates in the healthcare system with this insightful tool.

5. Transition Aging Parents

Dale Carter shares her findings on handling parents who are declining in health. Several supports, like financial tips and advice on VA benefits, make her podcast a significant resource.

6. Drew Wilson Discusses Telemedicine

Attorney and legislative specialist Andrew B. Wilson sat down with First Healthcare Compliance to address telemedicine in this podcast episode. As telemedicine rises, it has the potential to impact healthcare delivery, and this informative podcast covers these changes.

7. Senior Life Journeys

Executive director and author Carol Howell concentrates on dementia and specific scenarios she encountered with her mother. Her commentary helps others wade through the confusion of caring for a patient with dementia.

8. Healing Ties on the Whole Care Network

Christopher MacLellan, affectionately known as “The Bow Tie Guy” is a former working family caregiver, began the podcast to promote advocacy and communication before, during and after Caregiving end. The Whole Care Network is a story-based platform allowing many podcasters to share their caregiving stories, knowledge and resources.

9. TEDTalks Health

From the popular media organization that hosts TED Talk videos, this podcast offers engaging presentations about health. Various doctors, researchers and experts give their recommendations on healthy practices and medicine.

10. Caregiver SOS: On Air

Gerontologist Carol Zernial and veteran broadcaster Ron Aaron analyze common questions that plague caregivers. Along with Dr. James Huysman, an author and psychologist, these professionals go over issues like transportation and brain changes in the elderly.

11. Caregivers’ Circle

Featuring caregivers tending to children with disabilities, too, this podcast pinpoints unique issues in caregiving. It leads back to the fact that different levels and kinds of care still have universal links.

12. Medtech Talk

Pick up on the complexities of the healthcare industry by listening to commentary from the experts and leaders. Medtech Talk goes over trends and innovations from reliable perspectives. Search through their inventory of episodes to learn about specific solutions that might apply to aging individuals.

13. People With Parents

In storytelling style, comedian Leighann Lord delves into the role reversal aspect of caregiving. As a lighthearted review of the ups and downs of interacting with older parents, she gives her personal account of this unfamiliar terrain.

14. Happy Healthy Caregiver

Consultant Elizabeth Miller examines ways to enhance the routine of a caregiver. With tips for self-care, she encourages those in this role to avoid burnout.

15. Dave, the Caregiver’s Caregiver

Dave Nassaney and Adrienne Gruberg each take one-of-a-kind perspectives to this show as they interview other caregivers. Moving forward through grief and making life full for those in their care is a substantial portion of this podcast.

Tune Into a Helpful Podcast

While caregiving is an intense role, the daily compassionate efforts of professionals and family members are worthwhile. Podcasts can efficiently spread the stories and resources for caregivers as they support their loved ones.

Authors Bio: Kayla Matthews is a lifestyle and productivity writer whose work has been featured on Lifehacker, The Next Web, MakeUseOf and Inc.com. You can read more posts from Kayla on her blog, Productivity Theory

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Caregiving

Ways to Keep Your Brain Sharp as You Age


Have you found yourself having the odd “senior moment”? Don’t worry they happen to the best of us every now and again. Even young adults have been known to wander into a room and forget what they’re looking for. Lapses in memory can occur at any age, but as you grow older, you may well find them happening a little more frequently. We all know this happens but that doesn’t stop it from being rather upsetting. You might be worried that dementia is setting in or you’re losing metal function. Certain changes are happening in your brain and these are what cause fleeting memory problems. Thankfully, there are things you can do to protect and sharpen your mind.

Never Stop Learning New Things

Research has shown that keeping your brain active by learning new things stimulates connections between nerve cells. As well as creating new connections, it can also help to generate new cells. There are lots of ways you can mentally stimulate yourself. Reading, word puzzles and math problems are good examples. You can also learn something new. Look for courses taking place locally or go online and find out about Udemy membership cost. When you’re working, there are many parts of your job that will keep your brain active. However, when you retire, you need to find new ways to exercise your brain.

Physical Exercise

There are a number of ways that regular exercise can help your mind. Research on animals has shown that those who exercise regularly increase the number of blood vessels bringing oxygen-rich blood to the brain that regulates thought. It is also beneficial for the development of new nerve cells along with increasing brain cell connections. This then results in a brain that’s more efficient, pliable and able to adapt. As well as benefiting the brain, regular exercise also lowers blood pressure, helps the balance of blood sugar levels, reduces mental stress and lowers cholesterol levels.

Good Nutrition

Eating healthily is good for your mind, body and soul. A Mediterranean style diet that includes lots of fruit, vegetables, fish, nuts, unsaturated fats such as olive oil and plant proteins will reduce the chances of you developing cognitive impairment and dementia. Whole grains, oily fish, blueberries, tomatoes, eggs, blackcurrants, pumpkin seeds, broccoli and sage have also been shown to boost your brain power.

Use All Your Senses When Learning

You are far more likely to remember something if all of your senses are involved. More areas of your brain will be used when it comes to retaining the memory. Studies have been done that compared the ability of adults to remember an image when presented along with a smell. When the same images were shown later, without the associated odor, fewer were remembered.

One last point worth mentioning is the need to believe in yourself. Our brains are very powerful organs and negative stereotypes can have a profound effect on individuals. Convincing yourself that your senior moments can’t be helped is very counterproductive. Believe that you can improve your memory, and it will be more likely to happen.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Caregiving

5 Lifesaving Technologies for Caregivers


No matter if you’ve chosen caregiving as a career path or are overseeing the well-being of a family member in your home, technologies exist that can make your job easier and keep the people you assist safer.

1. The AngelSense GPS Tracker

Some ailments, such as dementia, make people quickly become confused and wander away, despite their caregivers’ best efforts to ensure their safety. The AngelSense GPS tracker reduces those panic-filled moments where caregivers wonder what happened to the people they were looking after.

A person in need of care wears it on their body, and an accompanying smartphone app reveals that individual’s location. The app also allows urgently notifying first responders in the event of an emergency. A geofencing feature provides email and text alerts if a person wanders outside a defined area, too.

There are numerous other GPS tracking choices, but this one is more economical than most, even with the monthly service subscription.

Doctors regularly use wearable devices to deliver things like medication reminders or engage in remote patient monitoring. The AngelSense device lets everyday consumers realize why medical providers increasingly depend on wearables as essential parts of patient care.

($99 for the product, then $33.33 to $59.99 per month for service, depending on the plan)

2. The Carely App

When a family member isn’t doing well, loved ones become even more stressed out. Many of them provide care that seems appropriate, but don’t realize someone has already assumed responsibility for handling a certain need.

The Carely app aims to streamline communications between family members and professional caregivers to ease mental distress and overall confusion about care. It also saves time for primary caregivers by compiling information temporary providers of care can instantly access through the app.

Moreover, medical professionals can upload content to Carely, creating digital versions of paperwork.

Many of the caregiving apps on the market don’t specifically focus on family members, but Carely does. It informs everyone at once, which is particularly useful when loved ones live out of town and can’t visit the people who need care as much as they’d like.

(Free for iOS and Android)

3. Express Messaging Systems

Facilities that manage the care of numerous people at once need an efficient way to contact loved ones in case of emergencies like building maintenance issues, power outages or other unplanned events. An express messaging system distributes communications in bulk to targeted recipients, thereby saving time during hectic circumstances.

An express messaging service can also be useful inside an assisted living community to remind residents about upcoming social events or other matters related to their daily activities.

4. The Maddak Patient Handler Lifting Aid

Transfers are among the most common duties caregivers handle, whether to help a person move into an armchair or get into bed. However, improper lifting techniques can cause back strain for a caregiver and put the lifted person at risk of falling.

The Patient Handler from Maddak is a shaped piece of flexible plastic that looks like a sling and conforms to a person’s shape. It features two pairs of cutout hand grips on either side, enabling caregivers to find the best position to lift a person securely.

Other — significantly more expensive — transfer aids exist, but the comparatively low price of this option and its basic design make it user-friendly and affordable.

(Priced at $70.55 plus shipping)

5. Reminder Rosie

Caregivers have dozens of things to remember each day, and there’s always a chance they might forget a couple of them — they’re humans, after all.

Reminder Rosie helps prevent that possibility by allowing caregivers to record up to 25 custom reminders in any language to aid people in need of assistance with remembering things such as to eat regularly, exercise or take care of personal grooming. It’s possible to set reminders to go off at any day or time.

The Reminder Rosie gadget looks like a clock, but it’s mostly voice-activated, so people don’t have to fumble with cumbersome buttons. An emergency backup system ensures the product keeps working even during power outages.

(Priced at $119.95 with shipping included)

Improving Caregiving for Everyone Involved

A decision to work as a caregiver comes with challenges, but most people who choose the path realize it’s worth those momentary obstacles. The solutions listed above could reduce stress and enhance the quality of care for both patients and those who look after them.

Authors Bio: Kayla Matthews is a lifestyle and productivity writer whose work has been featured on Lifehacker, The Next Web, MakeUseOf and Inc.com. You can read more posts from Kayla on her blog, Productivity Theory.

1 Comment

Filed under Caregiving

Stress-Busting Apps For Caregivers


We welcome free lance writer Jess Walker to The Purple Jacket

Stress-Busting Apps For Caregivers

Recent research has found that most care in the US is provided by family members, rather than nurses or doctors. This has resulted in over 40 million unpaid carers who look after adults aged over 65 in the US – and this statistic doesn’t even factor in paid carers and carers who look after people aged under 65.

This means that it is likely that there are hundreds of millions of caregivers in the US, and many of these carers will also have full times jobs and families of their own. Caregiving is already a fairly stressful job, and the extra responsibilities can leave carers feeling exhausted, anxious and upset. If you can relate to this, you could try using some stress-busting apps to help you feel better on a day to day basis. Here are three stress-busting apps for caregivers.

Happify

If you want to reduce stress levels and kick negative thoughts, consider downloading Happify. The app was designed by 18 happiness and health experts, and it has lots of positive games and gratitude prompts to improve your mood and help you to relax. This is very important because the medical community has recognized for many years that working as a caregiver poses an increased risk of ill health and mortality. The app also offers useful lifestyle suggestions, which is very handy as caregivers are often rushed off their feet! For instance, the app provides healthy meal options, including fruits, vegetables, healthy drinks that help to boost cognitive capabilities and snack suggestions.

SAM

SAM (also known as Self-help for Anxiety Management) is an app that helps you to monitor anxious thoughts. It allows you to track behavior and mood patterns, making it easier for you identify causes of stress. It also offers lots of guided self-help exercises to help you relax. Instead of watching online videos, try using this app to de-stress after a day of looking after your loved one.

Breathe2Relax

This wonderful little app was created by the Department of Defense to help veterans with PTSD, and it helps users to learn diaphragmatic breathing. This is really useful has various studies have found that controlled breathing can reduce stress. The app has lots of great features, including a log where you can record stress levels and customizable guided breathing sessions.

Life as a caregiver is both rewarding and challenging. Even if you love having such a meaningful role in someone else’s life, it is important to make sure you don’t put your own needs to the side.

Jess Walter is a freelance writer and mother. She loves the freedom that comes with freelance life and the additional time it means she gets to spend with her family and pets and can be reached at Jess Walter <jesswalterwriter@gmail.com>

Leave a comment

Filed under Caregiving